Western Illinois Athletics Announces Moment #2 from 2011-12
Courtesy: Western Illinois Athletics  
Release: Monday 07/31/2012
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2. Men's Basketball has a memorable run in The Summit League Tournament, earns spot in first-ever Division I post-season tournament.

After being picked ninth in The Summit League's preseason coaches' poll, the Western Illinois Leatherneck men's basketball program turned out one of the most exciting seasons at Western in years. The Leathernecks finished the regular season 16-13 and 9-9 in conference action, giving them the fourth seed headed into The Summit League tournament.

After sweeping North Dakota State in the regular season, the Leathernecks would open tournament play with a 58-53 victory over the fifth-seeded Bison in the first round before upending the top-seeded Oral Roberts Golden Eagles 54-53 to advance to The Summit League Championship and face the Jackrabbits of South Dakota State.

Playing in front of a national audience on ESPN2, Western would drop a heart-breaking overtime decision, 52-50, but was selected to play Oregon State in the College Basketball Invitational. That game at Oregon State was also on national television, played on HDNet (now AXStv). The contest marked the first-ever NCAA Division I postseason appearance for the team, and its 18-15 record was the best since the 1998-99 season (19-12).

Guard Ceola Clark become the first player in Summit League history earn two 'Defensive Player of the Year' awards, and head coach Jim Molinari was tabbed Summit League 'Coach of the Year' by

2. Men's Basketball has a memorable run in The Summit League Tournament, earns spot in first-ever Division I post-season tournament.
3. Freshman Sammy Marshall is crowned Division I NCAA Stolen Base Champion

4. Jenna Verity named a Rhodes Scholar finalist; Laura Lins receives the Lincoln Academy Student Laureate Award
5. Women's Basketball Eliminates Oral Roberts in Summit League Tournament, advances to semifinals
6. Leatherneck Baseball knocks off No. 8 ranked Georgia
7. Football knocks off Southern Illinois in memorable final minute to secure Homecoming 2011 win
8. Remy Roberts-Burnett hit the game-winning 3-pointer at the buzzer to defeat IUPUI
9. Women's Basketball drains a single-game record 15 3-point field goals in a win over Oakland
10. Ceola Clark III makes history with his second Summit League Defensive Player of the Year award
11. Jamie Goss tied the Western Illinois career RBI record
12. Doug Ogilvie named Summit League Diver of the Year


- Kristin Tschudin (women's golf) gets a hole-in-one during the Creighton Classic

- Dustin Hunter broke the Western Illinois single season strikeout record of 100 set in 1968 by Paul Reuschel. Hunter amassed 106 strikeouts in 2012 and posted a game high 15 strikeouts (second-most all-time) in a 4-1 baseball victory in seven innings versus IPFW.

- Kurt Slattery (men's golf) won the individual title at the Detroit Invitational.

- Leatherneck Football held the distinction of being the only team in the country to play both finalists for the NCAA Division I playoff championship game (North Dakota State/Sam Houston State).

- Men's Basketball game versus Eastern Illinois brings largest crowd in two years, Leathernecks defeat their in-state rival 64-48.

- Every Leatherneck sport program surpasses the NCAA APR benchmark score.

- Cait Egan became the ninth player in Leatherneck Volleyball history to record 1,000 career kills.

- Bridget Murphy was named the 'Most Valuable Player' during two tournaments in September.

- April Hall was named Leatherneck Volleyball head coach in the spring.

- Western's distance medley relay squad of Carianna Cottone, Amy Byers, Krystle Eskridge and Chelsea Lynes captured the Summit League Indoor track and field title with a time of 11:57.67. The mark was the second fastest time in program history and easily bests the previous meet record held by North Dakota State in 2011 (12:02.73).

- Four Fighting Leathernecks competed at the NCAA Track and Field West Preliminary Rounds. Nichole Manning (women's pole vault), Nathaniel Marshall (men's hammer throw), Dana LaRue (women's shot put) and Jamario Taylor (men's high jump) advanced to the NCAA regionals.

- Michael Castel earned Second Team All-Summit League honors at cross country meet and advanced to the NCAA Midwest Regional.

- Women's Softball posted a 10-game win streak midseason.

- Saule Kontautaite broke the Women's Basketball single season three-point record of 62 set by Doshia Woods in 2000-01. Kontautaite hit a total of 67 from beyond the arc in the 2011-12 season.

- Nikko Watson earned MVFC All-Newcomer honors after appearing in just four football games. He rushed a total of 485 yards on 90 attempts (5.4 apc) with three touchdowns and averaged 121 yards per game.



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